According to CNN, Americans move an average of every five years. Chris and I have been in Conway now for nearly three years, and it shocks me that this is the longest I have lived in any single place since I turned eighteen. The longest I have lived anywhere in my entire life is four years. As just one of a single mom’s six kids, what can I say? Stability was not our forte.
The story is much the same for Chris. Although he grew up in a stable family environment, he also grew up in a military family. He is used to constant change, both in job, environment, and social landscape. Learning to grow roots and stay is a lesson we are both recognizing that we need to learn.
And it’s more than staying in one place. It’s staying in the same place with the same group of people, determined to stick it out no matter what. A good friend said something very wise to me earlier this week. He said that worthwhile relationships, deep, meaningful relationships, always involve a bit of drama. And he is right. Worthwhile relationships are never crisp and clean; instead they are always messy. Because any relationship worth keeping is going to mean digging in, in good times and bad, and sticking it out. Strong accountability means speaking the truth in love; the flip side is that it also often involves speaking the truth in love even and sometimes especially when it doesn’t want to be heard.
So I am learning to recognize that gut reaction that makes me want to flee. I am learning to question the thoughts that say, “Okay, now is it time? Has it been long enough?” Because we aren’t all called to be rolling stones. Sometimes we are called to stay.